Photo: eBay
Nice Price Or Crack PipeIs this used car a good deal? You decide!  

Subaru Foresters are usually associated with sturdy flannel and fording rainy roads. Today’s Nice Price or Crack Pipe XT however is more about getting places quickly. Let’s see if it’s priced to make a quick deal.

If someone described you as being ‘a hot mess’ would you consider that an insult or a compliment? That’s pretty much how yesterday’s 1991 Lotus Elan was presented—with poor paint, a scruffy interior, and an overall aura of trouble lurking just over the horizon.

Being a hot mess, not even that Elan’s low-for-Lotus $6,000 price tag could sway enough of you to give the car a win. Instead, it went down in a substantial 73 percent Crack Pipe loss.

If Lotus is one of the smallest and quirkiest of car makers, then Subaru is one of the… well, I don’t know how you would describe them exactly. They’re not the biggest, or the weirdest, or the best smelling or anything. They are just Subaru and everybody seems to simply acknowledge the Japanese car maker’s particular place in the automotive landscape.

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One of the company’s products that’s a fairly notable feature of that car-tography is the Forester. It’s a unique entry into tall wagon crossover land for actually being less tall and more wagon-like than its direct competitors. Add to that the available of a rowdy mill plus AWD, and the Forester can become the smart solution to Audi addiction. Sort of a Methadone to the madness.

This 2005 Subaru Forester XT Premium is outfitted with all the right kit. In fact, its seller goes to great length in explaining that he searched far and wide across all the land for one that met his specs. Those apparently included: 5-speed stick, a one-owner history, and being appreciably stock.

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As offered today, it still meets one of those criteria —that being the row-yer-own gearbox. The others have fallen in the course of its second owner’s stewardship.

The changes aren’t dramatic, and a major one—the Cosmos MRII wheels—can be reverted since the car comes with its original rollers too. Other changes and updates on the silver over black wagon include a short shift kit for the 5-cog, and what’s claimed to be an ’07 WRX suspension. The 210 horsepower DOHC turbo/intercooled pancake under the hood is also said to have had the timing belt and related might-as-wells replaced at the appropriate mileage. According to the ad, the battery is new and the A/C blows cold.

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The seller described the body on this 122,000 mile car as ‘a solid 8.5/10.’ He gives the interior an even higher 9.5/10 stating that the carpets are clean and the leather upholstery is intact. There is some crazing on the leather, and the center armrest shows evidence of elbows having rested there. Maybe that’s where the .5 point was deducted.

Outside, it’s described as being rust-free, and, based on the pictures doesn’t look to have been dropped too far for its own good. Another plus is the notable lack of a fart can poking out from beneath the back bumper.

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Up front, the engine bay looks tidy and without issue. Subaru’s 2.5-litre flat four does have a rep for head gasket failures, and that’s an expensive proposition should your car fall victim. The seller of this Forester makes no mention of mechanical malady, but it would be a savvy buyer that takes the car for a thorough check up, including leak-down before trading any cash.

In this car’s case, the cash needed to trade is $8,100, an odd number to be sure. Why not $8,500 or $7,900, more common points on the consumer pricing spectrum? Some people just want to be different.

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Oh well, whatever the Ouija board magic that decreed that price, it’s what we’re going with. What’s your take on this Subaru and that $8,100 asking? Does that make you long for flannel and a 5-speed? Or, is that too much to become a Forester ranger?

You decide!

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eBay out of Smithtown, NY, or go here if the ad disappears.

H/T to Fauxshizzle for the hookup!

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